A week ago, the New York Times released a report saying that Temple was in talks with the Big East about joining the league “as early as next school year” to offset the departure of West Virginia to the Big 12 with a “resolution expected this month.”
If the following report from CSN Philadelphia comes to fruition, the Owls will have stretched the resolution date to the last possible day in February — tomorrow, Feb. 29. Leap day.
According to the report, Temple’s Board of Trustees will meet via conference call Wednesday to discuss the future of the school’s athletic program, and perhaps, accept an all-sports invitation from the Big East. The two sides have reportedly been conversing over the past several weeks with WVU’s departure on the line, so when Memphis received an invite to join the Big East earlier this month, Temple was apparently shocked.
But with the Big East needing immediate help in the 2012 schedule, it would be surprising if the Owls didn’t oblige.
It’ll cost, though. The school will have notify and pay exit fees for both the MAC, its football home, and Atlantic 10, where Temple plays all its other sports. That price tag could be hefty if Temple leaves right away. West Virginia had to pay the Big East $20 million to join the Big 12 this year.
“We’re not going to do it if it is a negative,” said the school’s BOT chairman, Patrick J. O’Connor. “If it is a net positive, we’ll do it. We’re not going to spend money to lose money.
“This is driven by the 2012 football schedule. Because of that, decisions have to be made. There are time considerations.”
Temple was given the boot from the Big East in 2004 because of poor records on the field and attendance. However, the football program has seen improved results over the past few years.